Archive for April, 2015


Neanderthal Menu

I consulted archeological and historical periodicals to assemble these recipes and show what life 50,000 years ago might have been like. Yes, in real life they probably didn’t eat on our schedule, but they got hungry just like we do. Warning, I am not a cook. For safety’s sake (and your taste buds’ sake) consult a food expert before attempting these recipes.

Neanderthal Breakfast—Neanderthal Porridge


Handful of wild barley

Handful of emmer wheat (AKA farrow), a wild wheat

Handful of einkorn wheat, another wild wheat

Handful of sorghum seed

Handful of pistachios or chestnuts

Yarrow leaves for seasoning

Handful of dates (Neanderthals in colder climes might have used cherries)


Heat water in a birch bark tray, being careful to keep it out of direct flames to avoid a fire.

Mash wild barley, emmer wheat, einkorn wheat, and sorghum seed; add to the boiling water

Hull and crumble nuts, then add to boiling mixture

Pit dates or cherries and add to the boiling mixture to sweeten

Boil until the porridge is soft

Lunch—Neanderthal Cattail soup


Half dozen of cattail flowers, pollen, & roots

Handful of chicory leaves & roots

Handful of dandelion leaves

Wild lentils with husks


Chamomile leaves for seasoning


Heat water in a birch bark tray, being careful to keep it out of direct flames to avoid afire.

Add wild lentils with husks to water, allow husks to dissolve and release the lentils

Peel & pound cattail roots, remove the fibers

Peel & chop parsnips and add to water

Add chicory roots & cattail roots to boiling water

Add chicory leaves & dandelion leaves to boiling water

Finally add cattail flowers & pollen to boiling water

If meat is necessary (Neanderthals ate what they had), add small animals or birds

Neanderthal Dinner—Water-lily stew


2 or 3 medium-sized Water lily pads

A handful of white acorns (hulls have round ends) or walnuts

One squirrel or other small animal such as rabbit or rats

Handful of wild onions

Wild parsnips

Wild olives


Drop hot rocks into a bison-skin bag filled with water and boil lily pads until tender.

Peel & chop parsnips and pitted olives, add to mixture

Skin squirrel and broil it. Add meat, innards, and bones to the lily pads.

Add wild onions, olivesFeb_27_001, and acorns to the mixture, and serve while warm.


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May Louisville SCBWI Chit Chatters Schmooze

Please note: we are back to our regular location!

Anyone from Kentucky, Tennessee, and Indiana is welcome.

Monday, May 4, 6 to 8 pm. No RSVP required.
The first hour will be for socializing, the second hour for optional critiques. Writers can read for three minutes. Illustrators are always welcome.

Barnes & Noble’s Café, 801 South Hurstbourne Parkway, one mile north of I-64, on the right. This is NOT the Summit Shopping Center B&N.
You do not need to be an SCBWI member to attend. For more information, contact Charles Suddeth csuddeth@iglou.com





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I have about 30 Pinterest boards, all of them devoted to writing or subjects that inspire my writing. (I never grew up, so some are about steam engines & horses & mules) I also have boards for all of my books, including the one pictured. Come join me: http://www.pinterest.com/chucksuddeth/

Eights Mask2

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8 habits of great YA authors Atlantic via Publisher’s Weekly

  1. Think Like a Teen: more than POV, be a teen while you write
  2. Find the “Emotional Truth” of the Teenage Experience: most teens have similar problems, goals etc.
  3. A Good Pop-Culture Reference Goes a Long Way: music, TV shows etc. (might have made-up names)
  4. Get Input From Real Teenagers: cowriter, beta reader, critique
  5. Use Slang Words at Your Own Risk: slang mutates quickly
  6. Keep It Moving: keep it simple & stay on the plot
  7. It’s Okay for YA To Get Dark: nothing is off limits anymore
  8. Find the Kernel of Hope: even with a sad ending, leave a way out
YA thriller, publication TBA

YA thriller, publication TBA

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8 C’s of Writing

Via 4RV Publishing

  1. Clarity: the writing, plot, setting are all clear. Clear writing tends to be elegant, logically arranged, and easy to follow.  Clear writing is so easy to read, follow, and digest that most readers won’t stop to think about the writer’s style at all. Clear writing promotes clear images in the mind of the reader.  Improve the clarity of your writing by cutting unnecessary words, using action verbs whenever possible, and choosing concrete terms that not only help readers easily comprehend but remember what they are reading.
  2. Conciseness: When you write concisely, you express your opinions, give directions, or explain a scene using the best words, and often the fewest words, possible. Concise writing expresses essential ideas without unnecessary words that don’t add anything important and waste the reader’s time.  Concise writing does not contain useless repetitions or wordy expressions, as explained below.  Redundancy: Useless repetition weakens your writing and wastes the reader’s time; it may even be insulting. Concise writing is clean writing, using only the words needed to express an idea. When editing your prose for conciseness, aim to cut out words and phrases that are vague, repetitious or pretentious.
  3. Concreteness: Writers can achieve concreteness by choosing the specific over the abstract, the definite over the vague and the distinct over the uncertain. Although concrete writing is crisp, it doesn’t need to seem stilted; concrete writing uses words that paint pictures for the reader, which helps make facts, products, people and places more realistic and memorable.  Concrete writing is creative because it shows the reader what is happening rather than just telling them.   Concrete language avoids generalities (including clichés), steering clear from general nouns and pronouns that can easily confuse the reader.  Granted, concrete writing takes more time and effort than general or abstract writing, but the rewards are worth it.  Good writers deliberately steer away from generalities, spending the extra time to make their writing more concrete and authentic. Concreteness favors active, descriptive verbs and modifiers over words that are abstract or passive.
  4. Correctness: Grammar, sentence structure, spelling, and other problems distract from writing. Read all writing tips and style information on http://4rvpublishing.com/4rv-style–info.php):
  5. Coherency: The writing makes sense, is understandable to the reader. The plot progresses logically without holes or unbelievable changes. The characters are consistent. The setting fits without taking over the plot. Everything written moves the plot forward or adds to characterization.
  6. Completeness: Remember the Ws of writing: Who, Where, What, Why, Where, When and How? Before you start writing, you should know where you want to go, how you plan to get there, why you want to write in the first place, and why anyone else (e.g. potential readers) would want to follow you.  You want to cover everything needed for readers to understand what you mean.
    Research: Research is important with both nonfiction and fiction.
  7. Courtesy: Courteous writing applies to nonfiction writing as well as to fiction. A writer needs not to be preachy or demanding. A writer shouldn’t treat the reader as if he were stupid.
  1. Character: In fiction, writers need to watch that their “people” and/or other characters remain “in character” and don’t suddenly behave in a way that confuses the reader.  In an effort to be entertaining and exciting, a budding author might write scenes where professional people are swearing and fighting, throwing punches and using language that’s completely out of character for them. Be sure behavior, speech, actions, and reactions are believable.


YA thriller, publication TBA

YA thriller, publication TBA


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Eighth Mask is available for preordering. (available June 12, 2015): After being accused of a murder he did not commit, Deputy Sheriff Charlie Yuchalla plunges into a mysterious world of supernatural giants, ancient priest orders and Cherokee mystics as he attempts to uncover the true identity of the person responsible for murdering a masked dancer at a Cherokee Booger Dance. , Library Tales Publishing. $18.99

ISBN: 978-0692419281 http://www.librarytalespublishing.com/

Eights Mask2

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Preordering will soon be available for my mystery, Eighth Mask: Deputy Sheriff Charlie Yuchalla and Alcy investigate the deaths of two Cherokee Booger Dancers. When Charlie is accused of murder, he discovers that someone in the traditional Cherokee community has targeted him. Can they find the killer before the Sheriff charges Charlie with murder? Mystery, June 12, 2015, Library Tales Publishing. http://www.librarytalespublishing.com/

Eights Mask2

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